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Bermuda 12, Don 11, Christine O'donnell 9, U.s. 8, Cnn 6, Jacqui Jeras 6, Delaware 5, New York 5, Washington 4, Us 4, Mark Galanter 3, Stephanie Elam 3, Sarah Shourd 3, Iran 3, Geico 3, U.n. 3, The City 3, John Cornyn 3, Bill Maher 3, Tony Perkins 3,
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  CNN    CNN Newsroom    News/Business.  

    September 20, 2010
    1:00 - 2:00am EDT  

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>> no. we're way down. right. we're like 49th behind bosnia. the number one cause of death is -- >> larry: so happy, folks, we could make your night tonight. >> what? you asked me a question. >> larry: thanks, bill. >> pleasure. >> larry: congratulations again. bill maher. he returns with "realtime with bill maher" on hbo friday night. he'll be appearing for two nights in las vegas september 25th and 26th. i'm meteorologist jacqui jeras in your hurricane headquarte headquarters. category 1 storm producing winds of 75 miles per hour just at its closest point it bermuda, about 40 miles off to the west. the storm has been lashing the islands for hours now with hurricane-force wind gusts and they've been reported as high as 93 miles per hour. those strong winds will continue throughout much of the night
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tonight. and then begin it subside by monday afternoon. the storm has started a northeastly turn. we'll start to pick up in forward speed. that's a little bit of good news. it will also continue to create large swells up and down the atlantic coast. and that's going to last at least through your monday possibly into tuesday, as well. that's the latest. i'm meteorologist jacqui jeras. we'll have updates as needed throughout the night. this hour, everything you need to know for your week ahead including the man you just saw, bill maher, exposing the controversial past of a tea party darl ang possibly forcing delaware's newest gop primary winner to cancel media appearances. how will washington react tomorrow? just a day after a key senate vote on don't ask, don't tell, the head of the gay republicans here this hour. hurricane igor bearing down, thousands either fleeing or bracing for the worst. it's a giant storm, and we're
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live in the middle of it in just moments. >> we begin in southern california where an overnight scare about a possible cult suicide turned out to be a false alarm. 13 salvadoran women and children who had been the subject of an intense manhunt were found today safe and unharmed. in fact, they were praying in a public park in palmdale, unaware police were even looking for them. cnn's thelma guitierrez has been sorting out the facts. thelma? >> reporter: don, the group of 13 including eight children and five adults were found right here at this park. they were sitting on the grass in the midst of a prayer session. in fact, can you see their bibles just right over there. they were in the midst of praying, say authorities. completely unaware that there was a statewide manhunt out for them. it was initiated yesterday when two of the spouses went into the sheriff's station and said they were concerned about their wives
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their children who are gone off with a charismatic person from their church and were going to the desert for prayer session. they were concerned about their safety. >> i don't know if they were letters. they were written exclamations, if you will, proclamations, and the letters themselves could be interpreted in many ways. >> reporter: so they weren't addressed to anyone? >> as far as i know. >> reporter: some of the language in it could be interpreted of saying good-bye to relatives but that's an interpretation. when you couple that with a missing person report and the concern and the fact that we can find them, the fact that you can't call them, the fact that they are unaccounted for, and i said this earlier, and the sheriff's department believes this, as all law enforcement does, it's better to overreact than underreact. >> reporter: authorities took a 34-year-old woman in for questioning. they say that she's the leader of the prayer group. they say she appeared dazed and confused and will undergo psychological evaluation, but they emphasize that she's not charged with a crime.
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no one is, because they say no crime has been committed. they found no drugs or weapons to suggest that anyone was in harm's way. don? >> we appreciate that. stories like this immediately trigger memories of jonestown, heaven's gate, the branch davidians, the manson family and other notorious cults. my conversation with a cult expert mark galanter is coming up in a bit just here on the show. back on american soil, after more than a year in an iranian prison sarah shourd is back in the u.s. following her release last week. shourd was let go after she reportedly found a lump in her breast, but now she says that doctors in oman told her she is physically well. shourd is one of three american hikers detained by iran after they allegedly crossed over the border from iraq in july of 2009. well, today she thanked iran for letting her go, but called on the country to release her fiance shane bauer and their friend josh fattal. shourd's arrival comes as iranian president mahmoud
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ahmadinejad is visiting new york. he's in town for the united nations general assembly session that begins tomorrow. in an interview with abc, ahmadinejad talked about the release of sarah shourd and said he would like to see some reciprocation from the u.s. >> translator: it's true that the islamic republic of iran took a humanitarian measure and released one of the three individuals who entered our borders miss sarah shourd. this was a huge humanitarian gesture. now you may be aware that eight iranians are illegally being detained in the united states, so i believe that it would not be misplaced to ask that the u.s. government should make a humanitarian gesture to release the iranians who were illegally arrested and detained here in the united states. >> the hikers' families have
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asked for a meeting with ahmadinejad while he's in new york, but no word on whether it will happen. hear more from ahmadinejad this wednesday on "larry king live." the iranian president will be larry's guest at 9:00 p.m. eastern right here on cnn. we want to go now to the gulf of mexico. the all clear has been given on that busted bp well pipeline that caused so much drama, heartbreak and the death of 11 men, becoming the worst oil disaster in u.s. history. national incident commander thad allen declared the macondo oil well officially dead this morning. the so-called bottom kill operation passed all pressure tests. the line may be plugged but no doubt it will be years before people along the gulf fully recover. the alaska senator who lost her primary bid to keep her seat is now claiming to be the victim of a smear campaign. republican incumbent lisa murkowski is launching a write-in campaign after losing to joe miller on tuesday.
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now she's accusing the tea party express, which backed her opponent, of dirty tricks in an interview with cnn's candy crowley on today's "state of the union." >> doesn't it look like sore loser to now launch this write-in campaign? >> what happened in my particular race, you had the tea party express, this california-based group, come in at the last minute in a campaign, run a -- a mud-slinging, smear, just a terrible, terrible campaign with lies and fabrications, mischaracterization. they came in and dumped $600,000 into -- into a small market here in alaska and they absolutely clearly influenced the outcome of that election. >> well, the man who beat murkowski in the primary joe miller tells fox news that she's just not getting the message. >> she's not listening very well to the alaskan voters because this primary, we had the largest turnout of republican voters in the history of the state, and they said resoundingly, well,
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2,000 votes, i guess that's as resoundingly as it gets, that in fact the views that we expressed during this campaign are the views that the future of the state needs to embrace, so i think that really she's just got a real disconnection from reality in thinking that the voters of alaska are extreme. >> more politics, a bizarre admission from the newly minted republican nominee for senator in delaware. tea party darling christine o'donnell in a 1990 clip from bill maher and abc's "politically incorrect." >> i dabbled into witchcraft, i never join aid coven. >> wait a minute. you were a witch? >> i didn't join. let's get this straight. >> i love this. you were a witch? how were you a witch? >> i dabbled in witchcraft and i hung around people who are doing these things. i'm not making this up. i know what they told me we -- they do. one of my first dates, my first
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date. >> wait, wait, wait. i want to hear about this. >> one of my first dates with a witch was on a satanic altar and i didn't know it. there was a little blood there and stuff like that. >> your first date was on a satanic altar. >> went to a movie and had a little midnight picnic on a satanic altar. >> bill maher showed that program on his new program hbo's "realtime." he says he's got more and going to keep showing them until o'donnell comes on his new program. o'donnell called off two appearances on talk shows today because her campaign says she had obligations in delaware. more political news to come. we're learning of infighting in the gop tonight over plans by one of its leaders to attend a fund-raiser for gay and lesbian members of the party. we're talking live with the head of the log cabin republicans in just a minute and hurricane igor bearing down at this hour on bermuda. reynolds wolf joins us live from the center of the storm and jacqui jeras is in the hurricane headquarters to tell us where it's all going. it's time for you to be part of the show.
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right now make sure you logon on to the social networking sites. send us a message and check out our blog@cnn.com/don. so we're on the serengeti, and seth finds a really big bone. we're talking huge. they dig it up, put it in the natural history museum and we get to name it. sethasauraus. really. your points from chase sapphire preferred are worth 25% more on travel? means better vacations. that's incredible. believe it...with chase sapphire preferred your points are worth 25% more on travel when booked through ultimate rewards. just look for a business with the superguarantee® shield. you'll get the job done right, or we'll help to make it right. protect yourself with the superguarantee® only at superpages.com®. it's beneful incredibites.h the superguarantee® ever seen anything like it? me neither. it's just the way you like it-- with carbohydrates for energy and protein for muscles.
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ncr: geico. 15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance. one tiny island. one giant hurricane. hurricane igor is pounding the tourist haven of bermuda right now with fierce winds and rains. jacqui jeras is tracking the storm at cnn's hurricane headquarters right here in atlanta. reynolds wolf braving igor at elbow beach in bermuda. let's start with you, reynolds. what's going on? >> reporter: well, this is the worst we've seen so far. i'm going to try to speak. hope the mike will pick it up. incredible wind gusts here over the past i'd say 20 to 30 minutes. center of circulation still pushing west of the island but there's still plenty of wind and
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some very heavy rain and at times incredible surf. we're up on a bluff overlooking elbow beach. [ inaudible ] if we were down below right in the line before sundown, we can pull you the video of what we saw. as you can imagine, the conditions there were just as bad. very difficult trying to stand. it was just hard to believe, just out of the sheer force of the wind that was coming off the water. the wind and waves coming right up and going right up against the beach bluff itself. this is a scene that's been playing up and down these islands, what i can tell you is for all 138 islands that consist of bermuda, all together about a third of the size of washington, d.c., the effect has been detrimental. there's been widespread power outages, as you might imagine. a number of people without power. 21,000, roughly two-thirds of
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the population without power as we speak. >> there have been reports of flooding. the causeway that connects part of the island together closed. the airport closed. shelters, the few that have actually gone to the shelter, anywhere from 40 to 50 and actually much higher than the number of people who went to the shelters back during 2003 with hurricane fabian. again, the storm is going to pass to the west. that's the good news. the bad news is once it continues to travel farther to the north getting caught up in harm's way, with peak winds still sustained for the next three to four hours and still tropical storm force winds possible for a good part of tomorrow, no doubt that the damage could be great before all is said and done. don, back to you. >> reynolds, hang on. back to you in just a bit. we'll see reynolds again. to update us on this hurricane. meantime, let's get to jacqui jeras at the center hurricane headquarters. jacque, he's getting really battered there.
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>> yeah. and this has been going on for hours like he mentioned. we have several hours to go. i think that igor has gotten as close as it's going to get to bermuda, and it's starting to actually pull away from the islands now. it's a category 1 storm. 75-mile-per-hour maximum sustained winds, but we've been seeing those frequent hurricane force gusts now, and when it's so persistent for so long, you tend to have a little bit more damage because of that. the eye of this hurricane is west of ber mewda, but the hurricane force winds extend so far out from the center of the storm. that's what continues to lash this island. it's moving to the north, and it's going to hook to the right, and it is impacting the u.s. with these large swells and rip currents. we've been seeing them all weekend long along the atlantic coast, and those will continue into tomorrow. now, we've got a couple of other big weather headlines to tell you about. these pictures coming in out of utah. this is outside of salt lake city. mandatory evacuations have been ordered now for the cove
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subdivision in herriman. about 100 to 150 homes, people who live in them, have been told to evacuate because the smoke is so thick. and this all got started through a military exercise. national guardsmen were using machine guns and, unfortunately, that sparked the fire. no structures have been burned so far, and then last but not least we want to tell you what's been going on in the state of texas. you would have thought this was a tropical system. but just an upper level disturbance bringing flooding rains. we're talking about major flooding in corpus christi. record rainfall and within a 50-mile radius of this city. dozens and dozens of roads which are closed and many area schools have been closed for tomorrow as well. more rain in the forecast, at least through wednesday. we've got an update coming in from the national hurricane center before the top of the hour, don, on igor. we'll tell you about that when that comes in. >> thank you very much. the new darling of the tea party movement and her past comments about witchcraft. the fallout from christine o'donnell's decade old remarks. . down the hill? man: all right. we were actually thinking, maybe... we're going to hike up here, so we'll catch up with you guys.
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>> it's time now for your cnn equals politics update. we're keeping an eye on the latest headlines on the cnn.com political ticker as we start the new week. let's join our senior political editor mark preston from the best political team on television.
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mark, tell us what's crossing right knew. >> 44 days until election day and the white house is taking notice. this week, expect to see president obama and vice president biden on the campaign trail. president obama heads to philadelphia as well as new york city to raise money for democratic candidates and democratic campaign committees. meanwhile, biden goes to massachusetts. he goes to ohio. he goes to maryland, and he closes the week in florida, raising money for the very crucial campaign dollars heading into the mid-term elections. meanwhile, christine o'donnell, she seems to be the republican, the politician that everyone is talking about right now. she is the come-from-behind kid, the come out of nowhere kid. christine o'donnell beat the republican establishment candidate to win the primary in delaware, happens to be joe biden's seat. however, a lot of questionable things have come up about her past. some of the statements that she has made, including the fact that she dabbled a little bit in witchcraft. a lot of fighting right now. a lot of confusion within the republican party. what did she mean? christine o'donnell making headlines throughout this
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weekend and continues throughout the week. let's talk a little bit about the republican party right now, don. it's doing very well. expected to pick up at least 30 seats in the house, maybe take back control of that chamber and pick up several seats in the senate, but what about the direction of the party? we had social conservatives here this week for the values voter summit. they said that the republican party has to continue to talk about moral issues. meanwhile, the tea party express has found all of its success talking about economic issues. so what is the direction of the party? a very important fund-raiser for the log cabin republicans this week, don, and they are going to have some big-name gopers there, including the head of the senate republican arm, john cornyn. tony perkins from the family research council asked cornyn not to attend that fund-raiser because the log cabin republicans is a gay advocacy republican organization. john cornyn said, you know what, i'm going to attend. yes, a lot of questions for the republican party, don, heading into the mid terms and beyond. >> great reporting on that log cabin republican dinner, mark,
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and i'm going to talk with the executive director of the log cabin republicans in just a moment here on cnn. you know i want to talk a little bit more about christine o'donnell. where does she go from here? can she win and does she really threaten the republicans' efforts to retake the senate? >> i think the republican party would have had an uphill battle no matter what in gaining the ten seats they need to wrest control of the senate majority out of democratic hands. the fact is christine o'donnell has helped to enliven the tea party express even more. however, there's a lot of questions about her past and some of the statements she has made. i think her advisers have gotten to her and told christine o'donnell, do not go out there and talk anymore. do not continue to make statements. try to go out and talk to the base voters in delaware. that's the best way to win in november. it will be interesting to see, don, if christine o'donnell tends to go underground and only talks to voters in delaware over the next six weeks or so. >> and she cancelled all of her appearances on the sunday talks and i hear she is canceling more
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of them. and as you said, they probably want her to talk to more of the people and not necessarily get on television and talk to the media. thank you very much, mark. >> thanks, don. >> and that's the cnn equals politics update. for the very latest political news, go to cnnpolitics.com. and we have more political news. an update to mark's report about top gop, a senator who plans to attend a fund-raiser for gay and lesbian members of the party. we're talking live with the head of the log cabin republicans, and also tonight -- >> the city looked at gene, saw that he had two felony convictions in his past and said, therefore, you can't work for the city. it didn't care about his rehabilitation. >> transitioning from behind bars to behind a desk. taking steps to help unemployed men with a criminal past get a fair shot at a job. ♪ for a chain of supply, that's logistics ♪ ♪ when the parts for the line ♪ ♪ come precisely on time ♪ that's logistics ♪
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as you heard our mark preston talk about moments ago, a leading senate republican enters a new week at odds with social conservatives. texas senator john cornyn, who is leading the gop effort to take control of the senate, plans to attend wednesday's fund-raiser for gay and lesbian republicans. clark cooper is executive director of the log cabin republicans. clark, thanks for joining us. >> thank you, don. >> listen, conservative groups like family research council, they are asking cornyn to skip your dinner, and they are blasting your organization for leading the fight to repeal don't ask, don't tell in the military and opposing attempts to ban same-sex marriage. are your views at odds with the republican party? >> not at all. actually being conservative and being gay are not mutually exclusive, and we try to remember and try to remind our fellow republicans that the two basic core conservative tenets, or i would call them book ends for conservatives, are
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individual liberty and individual responsibility. we're -- fill in those two book ends and you have positions like strong economy, free market economy, tax reform, strong national defense, a confident foreign policy and the list could go on, but again the basic two tenets of individual liberty and individual responsibility, and that is conservative small "c," and that's what we're reminding our folks about. >> so that trumps gay marriage, and that also trumps don't ask, don't tell. you said those tenets that you talked about. >> that actually falls under that, so part of don't ask, don't tell repeal is allowing for open service so that all americans can serve their country the way i do and my fellow colleagues. many members of log cabin republicans, because we're strong and pro national defense, are actually serving our country either in active, reserve or national guard roles.
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>> you understand though if many conservatives had it their way you would not be able to serve in many members of the military, gay members of the military aren't able to serve because of the views of your party. >> well, that's not exactly accurate. we're trying to -- we're working with other members of the republican party to get the party back to basics. back in 2008, our party lost, and we lost big, and as we say in the military, there's a big aar, or after action review, and one of the things that was realized by republicans across the board regarding -- regardless of where they were on the political spectrum, was that part of how we lost was divisiveness and wedge issues. mostly focused on social issues, not completely. >> okay. >> and so looking forward where we're going to win is focusing on common points -- common points within the party, such as the economy. >> yeah. >> let's move on. i want to move on and talk about your dinner. you have a din earn fund-raiser that's scheduled for next week,
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which is one day after a key senate vote on repealing military's don't ask, don't tell policy. here's how tony perkins of the family research council described your efforts to abolish don't ask, don't tell. how can a group that professes allegiance to the gop at the same time be committed to judicial activism to advance its radical social policies even at the risk of undermining the u.s. military and as a result national security. are log cabin republicans undermining the u.s. military, as tony perkins claims? >> not at all. in fact, many have recognize including on our side of the aisle, the current statute, the don't ask, don't tell statute, 10 usc 654 is actually a threat to national security. folks are being asked to redact their parts of their lives. dod is the last national security agency not to have open service. the central intelligence agency, the federal bureau of investigation, the nsa, that whole alphabet soup agencies for national security have open service right now. dod is the last to have that, so
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it is preposterous to claim for -- for anyone to claim to say that open service is a threat. it's actually reversed. having closed service or making it impossible for people to be honest about who they are is a risk for compromise of security and national intelligence. >> hey, clark, i've got to ask you this, because i want to get your feelings on it, and if you think it advances the log cabin republicans at all, former republican party chair ken mehlman recently acknowledged that he is gay. so what are your thoughts on his past role in the bush campaign and the policies that he promoted? >> right. well, ken has already said on record that he regrets those policies having been under his purview during that time and you're referring to the '04 cycle. he was in a different time and place. he was not out to himself per se. he was going through the coming out process, and so he is looking forward, as far as
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helping advance more equitable party, a more inclusive party. again, focusing back on the core conservative tenets that are book ended by individual liberty and individual responsibility, and ken is committed to making sure that republicans are leaders in that, and we are. there are a number of republican past and current leaders who are working toward marriage equality, towards open service in the military and toward employment non-discrimination as well, and i'm happy to say -- >> clark, that will have to be your last thought. hate to cut of you off, but it's a very busy news evening. >> don't miss our dinner. >> i'm sorry? >> don't miss our dinner, wednesday the 22nd. >> all eyes will be on that. >> yeah. >> and also what's coming up in the senate next week with that key vote on don't ask, don't tell. >> cloture vote. >> clark cooper, head of the log cabin republicans. have a good evening, sir. >> thank you. >> one day after referencing the
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sexual abuse scandal plaguing the catholic church, pope benedict references another controversial topic, nazi germany. first it was pakistan and now the monsoon season is proving deadly in another country. hey, did you ever finish last month's invoices? sadly, no. oh. but i did pick up your dry cleaning and had your shoes shined. well, i made you a reservation at the sushi place around the corner. well, in that case, i better get back to these invoices... which i'll do right after making your favorite pancakes. you know what? i'm going to tidy up your side of the office. i can't hear you because i'm also making you a smoothie. [ male announcer ] marriott hotels & resorts knows it's better for xerox to automate their global invoice process so they can focus on serving their customers. with xerox, you're ready for real business. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no more $2, $3 fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 no more paying to access your own money. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 it'd be like every atm in the world was your atm.
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top stories right now on cnn. pope benedict xvi has wrapped up his historic visit to the uk. before leaving for rome today, the pontiff condemned the sexual abuse of children by catholic priests. he said the abusers had brought shame and humiliation on the church. the german-born pontiff also praised the british people for standing up to nazi germany during world war ii. in iraq, violence across the country today killed at least 36 people. more than 100 others were hurt. most of those casualties were from two massive car bombs in baghdad. another car bomb in fallujah killed five. in northern india, the annual monsoon season has proved deadly. authorities say at least 63 people have died in widespread flooding and landslides over the past two days. about 5,000 people have been evacuated from the hardest hit areas.
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the worst may be yet to come though. more heavy rains have been forecast over the next 24 hours. housing prices, jobs and starbucks, signs the economy, well, may be on the rebound or headed in reverse. cnn's stephanie elam is getting down to business. >> reporter: we may be seeing signs of stability in the housing market. national home prices rose 3.6% over the past year. but some experts say that number was helped by the home buyer tax credit and could fall again soon. look for the latest housing numbers out on tuesday. well, lawmakers in washington work on fixing on the economy, new numbers suggest the healing could start right away in the nation's capital. the district of columbia gained almost 18,000 jobs last month, and employment is up 3% this year, outpacing every state in the nation. we'll find out more on unemployment this week. well, looking out for signs of economic recovery, a different kind of sign is causing a controversy.
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starbucks newly designed drive-through menu offers their 16-ounce grande and 20-ounce vente cups of coffee with no mention of the cheaper 12-ounce tall size for sale. logs are heating up saying the coffee giant is trying to trick customers into buying more, but starbucks says they are just trying out a simplified menu. that's this week's "getting down to business." stephanie elam, new york. >> all right, stephanie. police feared a mass suicide might incumbent works. that turned out not to be the case, but it raise questions, i should say, about what exactly is cult-like behavior and when should we be alarmed about it. a cult expert joins me next. plus, hurricane igor is bearing down on bermuda, but the u.s. coast isn't off the hook yet.
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a group of salvadoran women and children were found safe and sound today in southern california after an overnight manhunt by police. authorities had feared that they were part of a cult and had planned to kill themselves. neither of those assumptions was correct. cult expert mark galanter is author of "cults, faith healing and coercion" and earlier i asked him whether authorities were right to be worried. >> yes, i think there was, and i
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think we can underestimate how certain behaviors can evolve into very problematic actual outcomes, so although these women apparently were not doing anything harmful, the very fact that evidence was found in these pocketbooks that they were going to rejoin their dead relatives may well have meant that something more problematic was in the back minds of their leader, at least. >> so you think -- do you think we're going to see something more coming out of this story? might investigators or authorities there in the california area be looking into this particular group more? >> well, i think now that they have gotten this much publicity much to their surprise they may be very cautious, but i think there are groups like this all around in many respects. they come to different conclusions. most of them are relatively benign, but it's very hard to
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predict how a given group will unfold and what will transpire with them. >> mr. galanter, how do we know that, you know, something is in fact a cult or not? some people would say that there are religious groups, and very popular religious groups, which we don't have to name, that they have cult -- they have cult-like parts to their organizations as well, so how do we know exactly what a cult is? >> yeah. well, i labeled my book cults because i thought it was something that is understandable to most people, but actually the more appropriate term that's used in the book is a charismatic group which is a group that sees itself as transcendent in some way, that's highly cohesive, everybody supports each other, that has shared beliefs that can be either positive or can be problematic, and they vary so much that there are some that
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historically have been actually and clearly very dangerous. >> well, we've talked about -- we know some of the ones, the heaven's gate, jim jones, all those sorts of cults, but one -- you wonder what makes people become susceptible to these sorts of cults when there are other groups or religious groups that aren't considered cults where they can join and that have transcendent qualities but don't quite live up to being a cult. >> they usually get involved with some charismatic person, some person that maintains that they have some contact with the -- with the divine, some special message, and then it plays into the psychological needs of people who may be depressed, who may be displaced, troubled over some personal matters, and then as they
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support each other they become involved in the beliefs of the group, and once they do, they will comply with whatever the group leader feels is most important, and that could be positive, but it could also be negative. >> mark galanter. what if a criminal past could become a thing of the past? >> it's giving people a fair shot to compete for jobs where they are qualified. >> some states are taking steps to remove criminal history questions from job applications, and not everyone is happy about it. that story is next. plus, fall is here. one of my favorite times of the year. the leaves are changing. the weather is cooling and, oh, oktoberfest starting early. my mom, my business partner,
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> it's time now for what we call our week ahead whip. from washington to hollywood, these are big stories coming up to mark on your calendar. let's begin with the white house. >> reporter: i'm ed henry at the white house where the president will be working on politics and foreign policy this week. monday he's in philadelphia raising money for senate democratic candidate joe sestak whom the white house originally opposed and then it's on to new york for the u.n. general assembly meetings where they'll be working to contain iran's nuclear program and trying to make progress on israeli/palestinian peace. >> reporter: i'm dana bash in washington where congress returns this week for more of their brief session during this campaign season, and in the senate look for a big vote on tuesday. democratic leaders will try to start debate on a defense bill, which among other things, authorizes the pentagon to
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repeal its controversial don't ask, don't tell policy on gays. republicans are trying to block the legislation for several reasons. they are accusing democrats of holding purely political votes to appease key constituencies that have been frustrated with democrats in action. >> i'm poppy harlow in new york. coming this up week on wall street, critical news for the housing market, but first all eyes will be on the federal reserve when central bankers announce their decision on interest rates on tuesday afternoon. it's expected the fed will keep those rates near zero, but the language in the report will be dissected on wall street, and then we'll get the latest new and existing home sales reports this week. investors hoping for any upbeat news from the battered housing sector, and finally there's a hearing slated on friday on citigroup's proposed $75 million settlement with the s.e.c. over its subprime mortgage holdings. we'll follow it all for you on cnn money. i'm "showbiz tonight's" a.j. hammer. we're expecting big reality news breaking this week. monday we'll find out whether sarah palin's daughter palin bristol has got what it takes on
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"dancing with the stars" when the show's new season premieres. and this week, we expect to learn officially once and for all who is going to be replacing simon cowell and ellen degeneres on "american idol." "showbiz tonight" is live at 5:00 p.m. eastern on hln and we are still tv's most provocative entertainment news and tv show at 5:00 and 11:00 p.m. pacific. >> now becoming smart about what's happening internationally. let's talk about it's happening here in the u.s. the u.n. general assembly and, of course, ahmadinejad causing some controversy there. >> as always. >> yeah. >> the u.n. general assembly is going to meet this week and flocks of world leaders will be there and the focus of this meeting is going to be on poverty, health and education of developing countries. now, world leaders will take the podium thursday, and we can expect ahmadinejad to be making some comments that we will be watching closely. >> okay. we'll get you to hold that. having a little bit of trouble hearing you here.
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let's go to munich and talk about oktoberfest coming up. >> oktoberfest, the legendary beer festival kicks off its 200th year anniversary. and wa we're going to expect is the mayor of munich, this is on tuesday at noon. he's going to tap the first keg of beer and then for almost a little over two weeks, people are going to be out in the streets drinking and we can expect over 6 hillon people to attend this event globally. >> all right. thank you very much. that is going to be the last one, but we also want to tell our viewers to pay close attention because on sunday veerngsz the election venezuela, the election. we appreciate you joining us every sunday. have a great week, okay? >> you, too, thanks. black men make up 44% of the nation's prison population. they also struggle with a 16.7% unemployment rate. now, some cities and states are trying to decrease those percentages by helping unemployed ex-cons get a fair shot at a job. cnn's stephanie elam explains. >> here's a basketball. >> reporter: gene mayes knows
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all too well what a criminal record can do to a job search. once the top of his class in high school, maes dropped out of college and began selling coke to support his habit. >> once i started doing cocaine, it just shot straight to the top as far as my priority list. >> reporter: in 1989, he went to jail for drug trafficking. he served his time, paid his dues. >> it's october 7th, 1997, and that's the day that i got clean. name and -- >> reporter: flash forward a decade, mays, now married and a father, was studying to become an electrician to better provide for his family. >> i did something that they said had never been done, and that was got 100 on each one of the 12 tests during my first year. >> reporter: despite this, the city of cincinnati revoked its electrician job offer. david singleton is may's lawyer. >> the city looked at gene, saw that he had two felony
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convictions in his past and said, therefore, you can't work for the city. it didn't care about his rehabilitation. it didn't care that he was ranked number one in his class each of the five years of thetrition's training program. >> reporter: singleton successfully fought to get cincinnatti to ban the box, removing the criminal history question from its job applications. employers are still free to ask the question later in the hiring process. the point is to give ex-offenders a chance at an interview. >> it's not felon first employment program. what it is it's giving people a fair shot to compete for jobs where they are qualified. >> reporter: so this box issue, is it more of an issue for people of color, for black men? >> statistics bear out that if you're a person of color, you're more likely to be the focus of the police. you're more likely to wind up in the criminal justice system. >> reporter: this summer connecticut joined minnesota and new mexico in banning the box on state job applications. while massachusetts and hawaii
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ban all employers from using the box. massachusetts state representative james micelli is against softening these laws. >> i want to give everyone access to all of the information regarding someone's criminal record that they can get. why not disclose everything up front? >> fighting a financial crisis from the pulpit. the black church has fought for civil and human rights and now it's waging a war on debt. almighty debt. a black in america special coming thursday, october 21st, 9:00 p.m. eastern only here on cnn. hurricane igor taking aim at bermuda. right now a new advisory on its strength and where it's going just issued by the national hurricane center. meteorologist jacqui jeras updates us after a quick break. [ engine revving ] [ drums playing ] [ male announcer ] 306 horsepower. race-inspired paddle shifters.
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as promised, going to get you caught up right now on hurricane igor. the huge storm is battering bermuda. much of the island has no power, and the capital looks like a ghost town right now. jacqui jeras tracking igor at the cnn hurricane headquarters and reynolds wolf getting benched at elbow beach in bermuda. let's go to reynolds first. reynolds? >> reporter: well, don, the
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latest we've got is basically more of the same. we've had some gusts that have been very strong. i've got to tell you when it comes to the storm, although it is a category 1, although it's going to be in a dying state over the next 12 to 24 hours, the biggest danger this has posed for the region has not been just the strength of the winds but rather the direction of the storm, how long it's been coming, how long is the island been subjected to hurricane gusts and tropical storm force winds. and the problem is it's not going to just fade as the storm passes north, but rather it's going to continue. some of the tropical storm force winds, we could see further power outages as we make our way into monday, perhaps even into tuesday, and i'll tell you. last time when this -- when an event like this occurred back in 2003, with that hurricane i've got to tell you with fabian, it took some parts of the islands three weeks before power was fully restored. so it's going to take a long time to see the full-term applications of what this storm
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means for the people of bermuda. back to you, don. >> thanks very much. a new advisory on igor is just in from the national hurricane center. going to get to meteorologist jacqui jeras at the cnn hurricane headquarters. jacqui. >> just combine it all. right? we do have a new update from the national hurricane center. we told you that we thought igor was as close as it would get to bermuda. the nhc is confirming that. it's 40 miles to the west of the main island there. still packing winds at 75 miles per hour. maximum sustained, so that's a category 1 storm, and we just got an observation off the island as well that the winds are gusting at 93 miles per hour, so that certainly can cause some damage. the forecast track is unchanged. it started now that northeasterly turn, so we'll watch it start to pull northeast away and eventually becoming extra tropical. hurricane force conditions expected here into early tomorrow morning for several hours, and then we'll start to watch that diminish and move on out of there.